KEY: back-backstroke, breast-breaststroke, dist.-distance or 200 and 500 free, DT-Lansing State Journal Dream Team selection, fly-butterfly, free-freestyle, IM-individual medley, MD-middle distance, sprints-50 and 100 freestyle
Coaches’ predictions: 1. St. Johns, 1. Okemos, 3. Holt, 4. DeWitt, 5. Jackson, 6. Grand Ledge, 7. East Lansing
Top athletes: Rachel Ely (St. Johns), Sarah Stine (DeWitt), Freyja Garbaccio (Okemos), Megan Shaughnessy (Jackson), Alexis Alvarado (Okemos), Alex Davis (St. Johns), Alex Chow (Okemos), Kate Lehman (Haslett), Amy Kach (Haslett), Mary Grace Fries (Jackson),
Last year: 3rd (5-2)
Coach: Gregg Brace (28th season)
Top returning athletes: Anna Vostrizansky (so.-back), Brooke Spitzley (so.-sprint), Emily Hieftje (sr.-fly/sprint), Kaylin Gray (so.-breast), Maddie Dingeldey (jr.-breast/free), Sarah Stine (jr.-diving)
Other contributor: Sydney Shipps (fr.)
Outlook: The Panthers lost a strong senior class from last year to graduation, but Brace is very high on his incoming freshmen class and what they can bring to the table in 2014.
Last year: 8th (1-6, 2-6)
Coach: Ron Marsh (35th season)
Top returning athletes: Catherine Schertzing (jr.-IM/fly), Taryn Scherms (sr.-IM/breast), Madelyn Zink (jr.-sprints), Zorah Mondol (jr.-sprints/fly), Laurel Cullerton (jr.-sprints/fly), Stephanie Lingo (jr.-sprints), Alyssa Kraft (sr.-sprints/breast), Allegra Foreman (so.-free/breast)
Other contributors: Marlory Haynie (fr.-free/fly), Lilly Zink (fr.-back), Lauran Kauffman (fr.-diving)
Outlook: The Trojans return only two seniors in 2014 and welcome three freshmen. Growth and development throughout the season will be key for this young East Lansing squad.
Last year: 4th (4-3, 8-3)
Coach: Ian Townsend (6th season)
Top returning athletes: Colleen Simon (sr.-breast), Lissa Mueller-Hayes (sr.-sprints), Lillie Butkovich (sr.-fly), Kendall Ilieff (sr.-sprints), Sarah Clinkscales (sr.-free), Alexis Everett (so.-IM), Katie Thomas (so.-fly/back), Liz Wood (jr.-dist.)
Other contributors: Amiya Harris (fr.-breast), Taylor Kehren (jr.-sprints), Cecilia Rivet (so.-sprints), Emma Cornell (fr.-breast)
Outlook: The Comets return two all-area honorable mention swimmers in Mueller-Hayes and Ilieff, who will look to pick up where MISCA first-team all-zone 7 team member Rachael Charlow and MISCA second team all-zone 7 team members Taylor Stensen and Rachel Kehren left off in 2013. With the additions of freshmen Harris and Cornell to an already experienced cast, Grand Ledge will look to excel in freestyle and breaststroke events.
Last year: 7th (1-6, 4-7)
Coach: Damon Robertson (2nd season)
Top returning athletes: Kate Lehman (sr.-IM/fly), Allie Choi (jr.-free/back), Elena Carter (jr.-fly/free), Micah Turner (sr.-free), Hannah Alverson (jr.-breast), Amy Kach (so.-dive)
Other contributors: Megan Fulton (fr.-fly/breast), Hannah Krajniak (fr.-free/back), Emma Colandrea (jr.-breast)
Outlook: The Vikings are looking to rebuild after losing MISCA first team all-zone 7 swimmer Claire Beckett and eight seniors to graduation. Lehman — a MISCA second-team all-zone 7 member and honorable mention all-state swimmer in the 200 IM and 100 fly last season — and Turner, honorable mention all-league, are two of four seniors on a Haslett team that is looking to improve from a seventh-place finish a year ago. Honorable mention all-league juniors Choi and Carter will add much-needed experience to freestyle events. Kach, who was a regional qualifier and MISCA second team all-zone 7 team member as a freshman, will make the Vikings competitive in diving events. Freshmen Fulton and Krajniak, both members of the Spartan Swim Club, should add some depth to this young, but experienced team.
Last year: 4th (1-6, 4-7)
Coach: Marty Pohl (7th season)
Top returning athletes: Lauren Kirkconnell (sr.-dist./back), Abby Mealy (sr.-dive), Kyndal LoVette (jr.-back/free), Kelsey Marsh (jr.-dist.), Alexis Lefevre (so.-dist.)
Other contributors: Ingrid Petersen (fr.), Jessica Jacobs (fr.)
Outlook: Led by senior diver Mealy, MISCA second team all-zone 7 in 2013, the Rams will rely on their depth to help them contend in the conference this season. Kirkconnell adds experience and leadership in the distance and backstroke events, and junior LoVette, a MISCA second team all-zone 7 member, will look to build off of her successful sophomore campaign. MISCA honorable mention all-zone 7 members Lefevre and Marsh will make Holt competitive in distance events.
Last year: 1st (6-1, 7-3)
Coach: Patrick Saucedo (7th season)
Top returning athletes: Freyja Garbaccio (so.-fly/back), Alex Chow (sr.-breast/IM), Sarah Williams (so.-free), Carly Seeterlin (sr.-free/fly), Alexis Alvarado (jr.-dive), Claire Kiley (so.-dive), Samantha Lu (jr.-back/fly)
Outlook: Despite losing 2013 LSJ Dream Team members Katie Dudley and Grace Kao to graduation, the Chiefs still have very high expectations. Okemos will be led by Garbaccio — a member of last year’s LSJ Dream Team and a member of MISCA first team all-zone 7 team. They will also get help from Chow, last year’s CAAC Blue 100 breaststroke champion, who was also a MISCA first team all-zone 7 team member, and Williams— the CAAC 50 freestyle champion and MISCA second team all-zone 7 team affiliate. Seeterlin, a member of the MISCA second team all-zone 7 team, will provide veteran leadership in both freestyle and butterfly events to this successful unit. And Lu, a member of the MISCA honoralbe mention all-zone 7 team, will make an impact in backstroke and freestyle events.
Last year: 1st (7-0, 10-0)
Coach: Kim Brewbaker (12th season)
Top returning athletes: Alex Davis (sr.-dist./free), Meg Pope (so.-breast), Kayla Bellant (jr.-back/IM), Rachel Ely (so.-all events), Sarah Hileman (jr.-free), Catherine Voisin (jr.-fly/IM), Emma Schaefer (so.-breast/dist.), Callie LaBar (so.-back/free), Alaine Banninga (jr.-dive)
Other contributors: Amber Cousineau (so.-all events), Autumn Petrick (so.-back/fly), Tess Burnash (fr.-IM/fly), Chelsea Rossow (sr.-dist./free)
Outlook: The Redwings return a strong group of underclassmen mixed in with decorated senior Davis. Davis was a member of the 2013 LSJ Dream Team as well as the MISCA first team all-zone 7 team last year. As a freshman, Ely was named to both the LSJ Dream Team and MISCA first team all-zone 7 team, as well. Pope and Voisin were MISCA second team all-zone 7 last season, and LaBar, Bellant and Schaefer were on the MISCA honorable mention all-zone 7 team. Hileman was also a part of the MISCA honorable mention all-zone 7 team. St. Johns is a very deep team with its youthful experience, and are expected to make another run at a conference title.
Coaches’ predictions: 1. Mason, 2. Williamston/Lansing Christian, 3. Owosso, 4. Ionia, 5. Lansing Legacy (Eastern/Everett/Sexton), 6. Waverly/Lansing Catholic, 7. Eaton Rapids
Top athletes: Rachel Johnson (Mason), Kiana Namvansy (Mason), Alie Heineman (Williamston/Lansing Christian), Brooke Hedglen (Mason), Madelyn Irelan (Owosso), Rebecca Rogers (Mason), Sam Butler (Eastern/Everett/Sexton), Sabrona Butler (Eastern/Everett/Sexton), Abby Johnstone (Mason)
Last year: 7th (2-5, 2-8)
Coach: David Jackson (1st season)
Top returning athletes: Caroline McManus (sr.-breast/free), Katie Roman (sr.-free), Lynae Handley (sr.-free), Katelynn Jackson (jr.-IM/fly), Rebecca Lathrop (jr.-diving), Melissa Copeland (so.-IM/breast), Aubrey Jackson (so.-IM/free), Payton Wilcox (sr.-free)
Other contributors: Allison Pretzel (fr.-IM/free), Kersten Henderson (so.-diving). Sarah Roman (so.-free), Elizabeth Renney (jr.-free), Mary Hecksel (sr.-free), Haley Johnson (so.-back)
Outlook: The Greyhounds’ 2014 roster consists of five swimmers with three or more years of varsity experience. With a team of experienced swimmers, sprinkled in with youngsters who Coach Jackson feels can contribute immensely this season, Eaton Rapids is looking to grab its first league title in school history this season.
Last year: 6th (2-5, 2-6)
Coach: Kimarie Abadeer
Top returning athletes: Shyenne Fish (sr.-free/back), Lindsey Wood (so.-IM/dist.), Katey Jeffers (jr.-IM), Larissa Piggott (jr.-free), Bre Miller (sr.-sprint)
Other contributors: McKenna Boley (fr.), Tatiana Cardenas (fr.), Mary Voet (fr.)
Outlook: Abadeer said she wants to “build a team that supports each other and helps to achieve success.” While they have no divers, the Bulldogs hope to qualify individuals and relays for state finals in 2014.
Last year: 5th (2-4, 2-7)
Coach: Nate Burchfield (5th season)
Top returning athletes: Samantha Butler (sr.-back/free), Sabrina Butler (sr.-sprints/fly), Mikayla Crawford (sr.-free/breast), Charm Perkins (jr.-sprints)
Other contributors: Anna Gianiodis (fr.-breast/free), Katie Lewis (so.-back/free)
Outlook: After losing a heap of seniors to graduation in 2013, Lansing Legacy returns a group of young talent whom Burchfield feels will contribute right away. The underclassmen will be led by seniors Samantha Butler, Sabrina Butler and Crawford. Both Butlers were members of the 400 free relay team that finished in second place in the CAAC Red last season.
Last year: 1st (7-0, 8-1)
Coach: Connie Cantrell (8th season)
Top returning athletes: Rebecca Rogers (sr.-free), Brooke Hedglen (sr.-IM/back), Rachel Johnson (sr.-free/fly), Mariah Matthiesen (sr.-fly), Haley Clark (sr.-distance), Abby Johnstone (sr.-diving), Kiana Namvansy (so.-free)
Other contributors: Kaitlyn Caltrider (sr.-back/free), Chloe Caltrider (sr.-IM/breast), Bailey Cantrell (so.-breast/free), Becca Surato (sr.-sprints), Tessa Wilhelm (sr.-breast)
Outlook: With 2013 LSJ Dream Team honoree Johnstone leading the way, the Bulldogs have nine seniors returning from last year’s league champions. In addition to experience, Mason has a very accomplished group coming back. Rogers and Namvansy, a sophomore, were both members of the MISCA second team all-zone 7 team last year, and Hedglen was a part of the MISCA honorable mention all-zone 7 team. The Bulldogs have five swimmers that have four years of varsity experience. Coach Cantrell, who grabbed her 100th win last season, noted that her team is small, but says they are ‘working hard.” If Mason is able to continue its success from a year ago, it will have grabbed its third league title in as many years.
Last year: 4th (4-2, 6-4)
Coach: Eric Murray (2nd season)
Top returning athletes: Madelyn Irelan (jr.-fly), Valentina Larrivey (jr.-back), Rachelle Ocenasek (jr.-breast), Rebecca Huska (jr.-breast), Natalie Taylor (so.-dist), Madison Chmiko (so.-sprints), Alyssa Barrett (so.-breast), Alyssa Coffman (so.-back)
Other contributors: Mallory Irelan (fr.-IM), Lindsey Woodworth (fr.-diving), Jessica Culp (fr.-sprint), Jessa Baumdraher (fr.-sprint)
Outlook: The Trojans will return four three-year swimmers this year. The seniorless squad is led by Madelyn Irelan, who holds the school record in the 100 butterfly and was named to the MISCA honorable mention all-zone 7 team as a sophomore.
Last year: 8th (0-7, 0-10)
Coach: David Hill (9th season)
Top returning athletes: Grace Jansen (jr.-IM/breast), Madison Miller (sr.-free), Brenna Albin (jr.-back/free), Olivia Czajka (jr.-free)
Other contributors: Melanie Hunter (sr.-fly), Rita El Jbeily (fr.-back/free), Marie Kohrman (fr.-IM/back)
Outlook: The Warriors will be led by last year’s first-team all-league, MISCA honorable mention all-zone 7 team member Jansen. Miller, another first-team all-conference swimmer, will excel in freestyle events. Juniors Albim, an honorable mention all-leaguer, and Czajka will contribute in freestyle events.
Last year: 2nd (5-1, 5-4)
Coach: Robert Oliver (1st season)
Top returning athletes: Allie Heineman (jr.-free), Kelsie Hasse (jr.-IM/fly), Taylor Dollar (sr.-free/breast), Natalie Crandell (so.-diving), Megan Deal (so.-IM/fly), Kimmee Partridge (sr.-free/back), Marie Hetherington (sr.-IM/fly), Maia Guenther (so.-IM/breast)
Other contributors: Sarah Clay (jr.-diving), Alyssa Horner (jr.-free/back), Lydia Kugler (jr.-free/back), Adrienne Carlisle (jr.-free)
Outlook: Williamston/Lansing Christian returns a group of swimmers that may be young, but possess great experience. Heineman, a junior, was a member of the MISCA second team all-zone 7 team, and Hasse, also a junior, was a MISCA honorable mention all-zone 7 honoree. Dollar, a senior, was all-conference, and Crandell, a sophomore diver, was a part of the MISCA honorable mention all-zone 7 team.
Coach: Dan Christian and Julie Davis (1st season)
Top returning athletes: Brooke Wood (jr.), Kaitlynn Hammons (so.)
Other contributors: Nora Gildner (fr.), Krista Martinez (fr.), Lillian Snowden (fr.), Emmy Wilson (fr.)
Outlook: In its first year as a varsity swimming team and the first year for the school in the Interstate Eight league, Charlotte has a team made up primarily of underclassmen. Both Wood and Hammons swam for the combined Eaton Rapids/Charlotte co-op team last season.
Coach: Jeff Huxley (44th season)
Top returning athletes: Evelyn Vandemark (so.-fly/free), Alissa Adams (so.-breast/free), Grace Laffoon (sr.-free)
Outlook: The Panthers will focus on the Southwest Central Michigan Swim Conference and state meets after training well over the past calendar year, Huxley says. He expects Vandemark, who made all-state with a fifth place in the 100 butterfly and also took ninth in the 500 freestyle, and the rest of the team to have some “great swims” this season. Other schools in the league who will compete with Alma include Plainwell, Allegan, Otsego, South Haven, Sturgis, Marshall and Battle Creek Harper Creek.
Last year: 3rd in CAAC Red (4-2)
Outlook: The Cavaliers didn’t have enough girls come out for the sport to field a team in 2014. “We will try again for a team next year,” Corunna athletic director Nikki Norris said.
– compiled by James L. Edwards III